Anna Mae Shellenbarger, WWII Welder, 2022
9.6 in x 7.1 in
Joseph Kubes, Marine WWII, 2022
9.6 in x 7.1 in
Maureen Kenney’s Artist Statement
Honoring those who served in the military. Respecting those who currently serve. I never let a day go by without reminding myself that the very good life I live is built upon the bravery of many who did not get the same chance. Faded 1940’s photographs of uniformed men and women … just one second captured in time. It was a tense and disturbing time in our history that moves farther away in our collective memories every year that passes. Maybe some would like to forget, but I’d like to remember if only to say “Thank you”.
My way of saying thanks is different than most. I find expression through my artwork as a bead artist. By creating beaded tapestries of real people who served our country, I express my personal thanks with every row of beads I weave. I capture that moment in time in a format that I hope makes people pause, and maybe reflect and discuss what they think. That’s what the Thankful Generations project is intended to do. I’m hoping this project will promote new dialogue across generations, and most urgently with the generation of brave men and women who participated in the Second World War. So many WWII veterans are now in their 90’s, and I feel compelled to do this project before their collective voices are lost forever.
Andrew Manghis, Electricians Mate 1st Class, WWII, 2023
10 in x 7.1 in
Maureen Kenney’s Biography
Growing up in an Air Force family as the youngest of five children, I learned my nomadic tendencies early in life. By the time I graduated from high school in Fort Worth in 1981, my family had lived in Maine, Wyoming, Utah, Idaho, New York, Florida, and Texas. After college and graduate school in Texas, I added California to my list, came back full circle to my home state of Maine in 1993, and circled back to Texas in 2015. Through all of this, my appreciation has grown for the beauty of our country, the uniqueness of each region in which I’ve lived, and how changing things up has added exciting dimensions to my life.
Professionally, I have worked as a Child Protective Services investigator; a medical, hospice, and occupational social worker; manager of training and organizational development, employment, and benefits departments; director of two hospital units, director over a large self-insured/self-administered insurance program spanning sixteen states, and a professional business consultant. Currently, I am proud to serve my Alma Mater, Texas Christian University within their Professional Development Center. I know I’m happiest when I create, whether it’s redesigning an organizational structure, creating a new piece of jewelry, rearranging a room, or making sense of total chaos. Creativity kicks off an energy cycle that generates new ideas and stimulates creativity. My aim as an artist is to inspire dialogue across generations to keep important memories alive.